Monthly Archives: October 2014

Friday Clean-Up, October 17

Last week’s browser clean-up worked so well that I decided to do it again this week.

So, here are a few things that crossed my internet this week:

Fear and the Value of the Humanities

What would happen if someone repossessed American self-government?

Did cars create the megachurch?

Religious colleges and universities as the sanctuaries for the study of the humanities (hmm…there’s some cross-over with that first link)

Agnes Howard on Chartres Cathedral and Henry Adams

Angelenos don’t know who Joe Biden is (could other Americans do better?)

Michael Altman asks what “American Religion” means. Discussion ensues.

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Cleaning Up My Browser Tabs

Let me start with a confession: I have a tendency to click on links from various sites and then leave them as separate tabs in my browser. Over the course of the week, this makes my browser increasingly unwieldy.

So, this post is a bit of an experiment.

I’ll just record interesting, random things that I read this week. I’ll keep the links, but I’ll be able to close the tabs.

Of course, listing things here in no way implies endorsement. Still, if you’re reading this site, you might find them interesting, too.

Here goes…

41 Maps and Charts that Explain the Mid-West

Hong Kong’s Religious Revolutionaries: Do Christians Make Good Rebels?

Minnesota’s a Great Place to Live

Beware Higher Ed Doomsayers

Jay Case complains about the NYT’s Religion blind-spot

Why Ross Douthat loves Lena Dunham

15 Things You Might Not Know about Iowa

Where are College Football Fans Distributed?

About a book I want to read: How College Works

5 Questions with James K.A. Smith

 

 

 

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Christian Historians and Social Media Wrap Up

If you’ve been reading for the last week, you’ve heard from the various panelists at our session at Pepperdine University on September 26th.

Today, at the Religion in American History blog, I wrap up those posts, link to several others, and direct people to collections of tweets from the program.

So, if you’ve been waiting to comment or ask questions of the whole panel, this is your chance.

Again, the wrap-up is here.

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Why does Paul Putz blog as a graduate student?

We continue our forum on Christian Historian and Social Media–for earlier pieces, see here, here, and here.

Today we have the remarks of the final contributor, Baylor graduate student Paul Putz.

Paul has posted his comments to his blog.

I highly recommend you check it out. Paul brought down the house at our session with his thoughtful remarks. John Fea captured some of that sentiment with this tweet:

Read the entire piece, but I especially appreciated Paul’s evocation of how care for others can actually be enacted through social media:

In his book To Change the World, James Davison Hunter has words of wisdom related to this idea. In the book, Hunter articulates his vision for a model of Christian social engagement that he terms “faithful presence.” For Hunter, faithful presence is “a theology of commitment and promise…a binding obligation manifested in the relationships we have, in the work we do, and in the social worlds we inhabit, and it is all oriented toward the flourishing of the world around us.”

The online world might not be the place that Hunter envisions “faithful presence” being enacted. For Hunter, faithful presence requires one’s engagement in a particular place. It is a corrective to the ephemeral connections, dislocation, and fragmentation that comes along with our digitized age. Yet, I think Hunter is off the mark a bit in suggesting or implying that there is an incompatibility between the online world and offline world. While Christian historians should very much be committed to participating with others in their neighborhoods, local churches, and communities, the world online also offers ways for historians to carry out Hunter’s suggestions to “use the space they live in for the flourishing of others.” For example, Christian historians might find ways to link their online and offline worlds, using their time and services online for the benefit of their offline community. Scholars might take up digital history projects meant to protect and preserve the history of local organizations. Or, since historians will undoubtedly have members of their local community among their online followers, they might use their platform to promote local history-related events. If one’s neighbors, fellow churchgoers, and fellow city-dwellers participate online, then Christians scholars should view the internet as another way to share in the lives of those with whom they already share a particular place.

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Why Does Chris Gehrz Run 4 Blogs?

Continuing our series on Christian Historians and Social Media (with earlier installments here and here), today Chris Gehrz of Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota shares his ideas. (And yes, he does count as a neighbor in the Twin Cities.)

Chris shares his experience of running 4 separate blogs (he also apparently keeps another 1 or 2 on the side). Thus, he finds different objectives achieved with:

1. A Course Blog

2. A Department Blog

3. A Research Project Blog

4. And, a Personal Blog

All of his reflections are here, at “The Pietist Schoolman.”

And, let me add a voice that you should make “The Pietist Schoolman” a regular part of your internet intake.

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Why does John Fea blog?

As promised yesterday, we are rolling out our presentations from the “Christian Historians and Social Media” Panel from the Conference on Faith and History last week.

Today’s entry comes from John Fea, professor of History at Messiah College.

John took to the podium to answer 4 questions:

1.  How did I begin blogging?
2.  Platform Blogging [How is blogging a platform?]
3.  My Philosophy of Blogging
4. Is Blogging Scholarship?
John’s answers to these questions can be found on his blog, here. Click over there to find out.

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